Why is it important to love your job? There have been a lot of views on this over the years. The truth is that it has little to do with how it benefits your employer, and a lot to do with how it benefits you.
Public Speaking and Vomit
A lot of people hate public speaking. Jerry Seinfeld once said this about public speaking:
According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.
Public speaking has made a lot of people nervous, even to the point of throwing up. It’s made them avoid work, panic, and even rob banks.
Okay, I’m not 100% sure on that last one, but regardless, for most people public speaking sucks. At the same time, in my personal experience, it was the key that answers the question, “why is it important to love your job?”
That One Moment
I’ve spoken hundreds of times to groups of various sizes, even to a group of around 10,000 people spread out over 5 large campuses by teleconference with dozens of other locations connected in. I’ve sat in the chair waiting to go out wondering if I was ready for what was about to happen.
One particular time I was about to go on stage in front of hundreds of people, with a giant screen of myself behind me, when panic started to hit.
What if I bombed? What if I tripped walking up? What if I forgot what I was going to say? I started thinking about all the bad possibilities. I started to freak out at the thought of all those eyes on me. I was going to be on stage in less than 15 minutes, and that left me plenty of time to stew.
Why is it important to love your job? For the same reason of what happened next.
My Approach to Public Speaking
I was not new to public speaking at this point. I had done it many times. I loved it. It was a great way to connect with people and wow them. I had prepared. Still, the panic was about to derail that.
Imagine going up on stage panicked, scared, and ready to fail. What kind of energy would I project? How likely would it be that I would become exactly what I was worried about?
As I started to think about all that, I began to realize: this was crazy. I love public speaking! I love making a crowd laugh and just connecting with people. After all, a crowd is just a collection of individual people, and it’s easy to connect with people.
Why is it important to love your job? For pretty much the same reason.
Why Is it important to Love Your Job?
There are two main reasons why you need to love your job. The first is simply that you will do it better. It’s hard to speak to people, interact with customers, or work well with coworkers when you hate your job. The more you enjoy it, the better you can do your job. It’s almost too obvious to mention.
What’s more, studies show that the happier you are, the more productive you are and the less mistakes you make. If you have a job that increases pay the more you produce, that means more money. Most jobs reward more productivity and less mistakes with promotions and raises.
At the same time, I haven’t even mentioned the biggest reason: it’s your life, and a lot of it. With an average work week of 40 hours a week, that means that working takes more of your time than any other waking activity. If you hate what you do, you hate a giant portion of your waking life. You have a choice: find a way to love it or find a job you can love.
Why is it important to love your job? Because it’s a big chunk of your life. Why hate it?